FAQ: What's the shelf life of organic skin care

This week we've been running one of our new team members through some FAQ for customer service. Since quite a few topics will be of interest to our customers in general, we'll share some information on here.

One question we get asked a lot is the shelf life of organic skin care and organic makeup. The reason why the answer is so important for your safety is that because beauty products that are certified organic cannot contain any chemical preservatives such as phenoxyethanol or other substances to preserve them, they are more susceptible to harmful bacteria growth if not handled correctly. The following information is a general guide only.

As a general guide, once you open a skin care or makeup product, you are best to use it within 6 months. Your organic mascara should actually be used within 3 months. If a product is in an airless pump, you may get a little longer. If you're opening the jar and constantly exposing it to oxygen, you may get less than 6 months.

Ways to prolong the safe period of usage are:-

  • Don't ever dip dirty fingers in to products
  • Don't even dip clean fingers in, use a spatula or a cotton ball and don't double dip
  • Don't store your makeup and skin care in a hot and humid bathroom

If your beauty product has a small amount of chemical preservative in it, you are less likely to develop mould or harmful bacteria in your products. If they're certified organic and only contain natural ingredients to preserve them, you do need to be mindful about how to store them and touch them and be aware of the date you started to use them. Either place an alert in your diary, on your smart phone or place a small sticker on the underside of the jar and write the date you opened it on the bottom.

Remember, it is dangerous to use natural beauty products that have been opened for extended periods of time and not stored properly. Unless you have a distinct allergy to the chemical preservatives to use, it is safer to use a product with a small amount of preservative in it and know that it's safe than it is to play Russian Roulette with an old jar of face cream that was opened so long ago you don't remember doing it. If you're ever in doubt, dispose and replace with something you know is safe.

The Zkin Organics range have a really unique preservative system in them, a blend of 5 natural ingredients that allow the products to be shelf stable for 18 months without the use of an airless pump. They received a grant from the Australian government for their discovery. It is this kind of innovation that makes them one of our favourite organic skin care brands in our store.


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